Circumnuclear Star Formation in M100

Authors: Ryder, S.D.1; Knapen, J.H.2

Source: Astrophysics and Space Science, Volume 276, Numbers 2-4, 2001 , pp. 405-412(8)

Publisher: Springer

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Near-infrared (JHK) images of the nucleus of the barred spiral galaxy M100 (NGC 4321) have been obtained using a high-bandwidth tip-tilt secondary and fast guider system on the 3.8 m United Kingdom Infrared Telescope (UKIRT). The resulting images, with a resolution of 0.34″ at K, reveal for the first time a host of compact `knots', which appear to be the result of a recent burst (or bursts) of star formation. Confirmation of this comes from K-band spectroscopy of these knots with CGS4 on UKIRT, which shows Brγemission and CO absorption features. A comparison with starburst evolutionary models suggests ages for these knots of between 17 and 27 Myr, and a stellar population dominated by late-type supergiants.

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Joint Astronomy Centre, Hilo, HI 96720, U.S.A. E-mail: 2: University of Hertfordshire, Dept. Physical Sciences, Hatfield AL10 9AB, U.K. E-mail:

Publication date: January 1, 2001

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